Camanchaca acquisition moves forward

Shares in Quiñenco rose nearly 2 percent last week on confirmation that its strategy to acquire Camanchaca Pesquera is proceeding.

Quiñenco is a multi-sector conglomerate in Chile with consolidated assets of EUR 30.4 billion (USD 38.1 billion). Its Grupo Luksic division is in confidential negotiations to buy Camancha’s farmed salmon operations, an investment said to be valued at EUR 1 billion (USD 1.3 billion).

Through a communiqué sent to the Santiago Stock Exchange, Quiñenco CEO Francisco Pérez Mackenna stressed that it was essential to move the strategy forward, but that “to date no amount has been agreed in the course of conversations … talks are developing which, as they come into existence, we will promptly inform the superintendent and the market, according to regulations.”

Camanchaca exported some 17,640 metric tons of salmon in 2009, making it Chile’s fifth largest farmed salmon exporter by volume sales.

“We hope to return to salting salmon in 2011, once the vaccines are proven and progress in general fishing is heading toward a successful conclusion,” said Camanchaca general manager Francisco Cifuentes.

Referring to the Luksic deal, he continued: “We are not interested in participating in the first wave of renewing this product, which has already started in any case, but in the second, and without doubt we are going to do it well because it is a healthy sector of our operation.”

Due to the confidential nature of negotiations, Davor Domitrovic, Luksic’s lawyer, was reluctant to reveal further details.

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